Volkswagen is soon to join Hyundai in offering a 10-speed automatic gearbox. The German automaker's upcoming transmission will be a dual-clutch unit, company chairman Martin Winterkorn announced at the International Vienna Motor Symposium. Also on the way is what Volkswagen calls a "high-performance diesel engine."
With its 10-speed transmission, Volkswagen isn’t the first automaker to make news with an upcoming, multi-speed transmission designed to increase fuel efficiency. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee will be the first Chrysler Group product to use a nine-speed automatic transmission, which we’ll also soon see in the Range Rover Evoque. Hyundai is working on a 10-speed automatic transmission, but Volkswagen will likely offer the first 10-speed dual-clutch transmission.
We wonder whether the 10-speed dual-clutch transmission may first be offered in a Volkswagen, Audi, or Porsche plug-in hybrid. Volkswagen has also reaffirmed that plug-in hybrids are the company’s “first choice” in alternative-powertrain technologies in the medium term. Such vehicles can offer completely electric ranges of up to about 31 miles. The recently announced 2014 Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid can travel about 20 miles before the internal combustion engine turns on.
As for the high-performance diesel, Volkswagen says it will produce 134 hp per liter of displacement. The diesels will also have a high-pressure injection system at up to 3000 bar. What specific vehicles will be the first to get the new diesel and 10-speed dual-clutch transmission isn’t yet clear, but we’re guessing it’ll wear Audi or Porsche badges.